Milestone Birthdays: What they mean for your money

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Ken Mahoney, financial advisor and author of "Not Your Father's Retirement", tells PIX11 viewers what to do with money on each and every milestone birthday to better prepare for retirement.

  • Turning 18: Open a checking and savings account. Time to start learning the basics if you haven’t started already. Decide how much you can afford to save each month and set up an auto enroll.
  • Turning 21: The twenties are all about self-discovery . . . and Discover cards. It’s time to start working on building good credit by opening up a credit card. I actually recommend Amex because it requires you to pay off the entire balance each month – a good habit to start young. So put a glass of wine on your credit card and begin boosting that FICO score.
  • Turning 25: Start contributing to an IRA each month, increasing the monthly automatic deposit each year. Compound interest benefits are at their height right now, take advantage.
  • Turning 30: Do a career check. Now is the time to change directions if what you’re doing now no longer supports your life goals. You’ll want to be in your prime earning years by the time you’re 40.
  • Turning 40: Ask for a raise and start earning equity. Now is the time you want to kick up your earnings. If you’re an asset at work, consider asking for a raise. Also, if you can buy a home, now’s the time to do it because you’ll want to start building equity for use later in life.
  • Turning 50: Set your retirement goals and kick up saving. Consider your risk in the markets and decide when to move to more conservative investments.